Thursday, August 04, 2022

Beware of Swagger Bearing Gifts

It's clear to me that Mayor Eric Adams doesn't give a golly gosh darn about public schools. The Mayor is all about being photographed in the right places, tweeting about how wonderful he is, and hurling juvenile insults at anyone who dares question his divine judgment. He called people who criticized his school budget cuts "clowns," and continues to remind me of Donald Trump in more ways than I wish to consider.

Now, facing a lawsuit that has thus far halted his draconian cuts to education, the mayor is graciously allowing schools to use stimulus funds to pay teacher salaries. Don't get me started on why schools ought not to be responsible for salaries in the first place. Since they are (another great innovation from Mike Bloomberg), it may be helpful to some schools struggling to retain staff. Of course, as the article points out, said staff may already have found other placement. I'd be happy to leave a place that deemed me expendable enough to get rid of me, and I've no doubt others feel the same.

This mayor does not act to help schools. Altruism is not his thing, unless it involves the police, who do no wrong ever in Adams world. This may help him a little in his PR war, which, from everything I read, he's winning nowhere but the NY Post editorial page. They'll say, see, we've allowed them to use these funds for this, and therefore our decision to cut funds when we're rolling in dough is not so bad after all.

The first thing, though, that came to my mind when I read this, had nothing to do with school budgets. It had everything to do with contract negotiation. Don't doubt for a minute that Chancellor Soaring High, after making videos about just how much he appreciates teachers, will say oopzie, the federal funds have run out, so we have no money to fund raises for teachers. 

Now sure, you'll say, they are a bunch of bumbling idiots, blathering about this and that, and haven't got the capacity to plan for anything. That's true, but Adams took six million dollars from a charter PAC, and deteriorating public schools are a good thing for Eva Moskowitz. And what's good for Moskowitz is good for Adams' campaign war chest. Maybe, in a few years, someone not insane will not only oppose him, but also persuade New Yorkers that she isn't insane. Stranger things have happened.

Maybe he's got Moskowitz people telling him what to do. They didn't give him six million bucks just for the fun of it, and there's more where that came from. There are reasons they didn't just pump them directly into Moskowitz Test Prep Factories. These people abhor public schools, and we be perfectly content allowing our children to roam the streets like the kids in Salaam Bombay

So as we face an expiring contract and a mayor who's already stated he has no plans to offer raises for anything but productivity increases, expect them to say, hey, we had this money, but we won't have it next year. Expect Chancellor Soaring High to say gee, you guys are heroes, but we can't offer you enough money to buy a hero sandwich, let alone housing in one of the most expensive sectors in the country.

If rich people didn't have to pay taxes for public schools, they'd have even more money they don't need. That's what Mayor Swagger is all about, and it's on us to trust him as far as we can throw him. (Also, if you're planning to throw him, please post the video.) Let's not trust this latest phony move from this particular phony leader.

blog comments powered by Disqus